Weekly News - Friday 30th September 2022Posted on: 30/09/2022
Yesterday we celebrated St. Helen's Day at school, which is when we think about the history of our school and about St. Helen, after whom we are named. During the day, pupils in Years 2-6 attended a special afternoon assembly at which Old Helenian Ishil Mehta spoke about life at St. Helen's College many years ago. The pupils also had the opportunity to ask Mrs. Crehan questions about what life was like at St. Helen's College when she lived here as a child and in the days when Mr. and Mrs. Crehan were the joint Heads of the school.
Our new pupil leadership team gave a presentation about the history of the school, Year 5 performed a chant about St. Helen herself and we had a super performance from Minaya W on the piano. Many thanks indeed to all those involved.
In the evening, we held a drinks reception for Old Helenians and current and ex-staff. Some of our Year 6 pupils gave musical performances and tours for alumni who were keen to see how the school has changed over the years. Our guests also enjoyed perusing the history boards with old photographs, school reports and more. It is always wonderful to see old pupils return and super that they are so interested in what is going on at the school now.
Upper School Harvest Festival
Today pupils in Years 2 - 6 attended All Saints Church for our annual Harvest Festival service. Our Year 5 pupils led the service with poems and readings to remind us of all that we have to be thankful for at this special time of year. There were many parents in attendance and, as ever, the St. Helen's College community was extremely generous with donations of food. These will be given to the local Salvation Army for distribution amongst those in need in our local community. Thank you all very much for your generosity.
The Lower School will also be celebrating Harvest next week and parents are warmly invited to watch your children's Harvest performances and to bring in donations a day or two before your child's event. The dates and times are as follows.
Wednesday 5th October 8.45 a.m.
Harvest Assembly at Methodist Church
Thursday 6th October 8.45 a.m.
Harvest Assembly at Methodist Church
Friday 7th October 8.45 a.m.
Harvest Assembly at Methodist Church
Trips and Visits
It has been a busy week of activities to enrich the children's learning.
Year 3 visited St. Albans on Monday, where their history knowledge about The Romans was certainly expanded through a tour and workshops.
On Thursday, our Reception children took a trip to Odds Farm, during which they enhanced their learning about their 'On The Farm' topic.
Also on Thursday, the Year 4 classes enjoyed visiting workshops themed around Ancient Greece to bring history to life.
Our Nursery children today had the chance to join a live webcast through Scholastic of Julia Donaldson reading her latest book 'The Baddies' and Axel Scheffler drawing pictures for the book. They also had a singalong with Julia Donaldson with some of her familiar songs.
Month End Music Recital
Very well done to the many children who performed at our first informal music recital of the academic year this afternoon. Thank you to the parents who came along to support and celebrate your children's musicality. What a lovely way to start the weekend!
News From The Library
The Upper School library marked St Helen's Day with a number of quizzes for all years which celebrated this literary corner of school! Children enjoyed an acrostic St. Helen's Day quiz, solving clues that showed them how well they have been learning their way around the library shelves. Even the youngest years grappled a little with the Dewey Decimal system!
It was a very busy library session; in fact it has been a week of many quizzes, with more to come next week with a quiz set by Ayla A in Year 6.
Interested Year 6 pupils are reminded to apply by Monday for the role of Student Librarians. These students work one shift a week to assist in the running of the library at lunchtimes. All Year 6 pupils are encouraged to reply; an interest in reading is really helpful and readers of all abilities are welcome. Listening and organisational skills are valued too! Pupils should email Mrs Emanuel a few sentences about why they would like to be a librarian, their current clubs and a few sentences about a book they have recently enjoyed reading and why.
TCS London Mini Marathon: Tomorrow
We are delighted that so many families and staff have signed up for the TCS Mini London Marathon tomorrow. We look forward to seeing you there. Timings for the event are:
12.00 p.m. Reception & Year 1
12.30 p.m. Years 2 - 6
If you have not already done so, please read carefully through this information about the day. Please remember that parents remain responsible for their children throughout the event. Your child should wear their school PE kit; although there is no official meeting point, this will make it possible for St. Helen's College families to spot each other more easily.
Walk To School Fortnight: 3rd - 14th October
The last two weeks of this half term will be 'Walk To School Fortnight' for our Year 2 - 6 children. Every child will be given a loyalty card, which will be stamped by our Junior Travel Ambassadors for each day that the child walks to school. If your child is unable to walk to school, they can also achieve a stamp by walking five laps of the playground before school each day. Children will need to arrive at school in good time (by 8.15 a.m. at the absolute latest) in order to complete their laps and earn their stamp.
The class with the most stamps at the end of the fortnight will receive a certificate and some extra play time too. No doubt there will be fierce competition amongst the classes for this coveted prize!
We hope that you will join us in encouraging the children to walk to school during the final two weeks of the half term, or to earn their stamps by walking the playground laps. You can find a fun Walk to School booklet here and a Walk From Home activity sheet here to help make your walk to school fun!
You can also find our St. Helen's College Walk Zone map here.
St. Helen's College Trust
The St. Helen's College Trust (Registered Charity Number: 1196657) is an independent charity which exists to promote educational opportunities and all-round development of children aged 0-11 in Hillingdon and the surrounding areas. The charity was established last year and we are delighted that St. Helen's College parents have been generous in their support of it so far.
We are pleased to report that, this week, the charity's Trustees approved applications for grants from local charitable bodies for the following:
Ickenham Youth FC: Funds to set up an U6/U7 girls' football team. The money will be used to train coaches and buy equipment so that even more girls in the local area will be able to play football in an inclusive club from a young age.
Home Start Hillingdon: Funds to train volunteers in their spring training programme. Home Start volunteers assist families with children aged 0-5 who are struggling. Volunteers provide emotional and practical support and signpost families to further services where appropriate.
Hillingdon Basketball Club: Funds to buy equipment and t-shirts for youth members, to encourage a sense of community and to encourage children to return to the club and be ever more active.
The Trustees will be carrying out impact assessments in due course to monitor the impact of grants awarded.
The charity is inviting grant applications on a rolling basis. The criteria for grant applications is wide: the only restrictions are that funds applied for must be used for the direct benefit of children aged 0-11 (whether individuals or groups) in Hillingdon and the surrounding areas and that the charity cannot approve grants to be spent on educational equipment or services that should be provided by the Local Authority. If you do know of any group or individual who might like to apply for funds, please direct them to the simple online application form here.
Many congratulations to Ali (1R) and Hassan (Robins), who completed a sponsored climb last weekend up Northala Hills.
The brothers were raising money for Al Ayn Social Care Foundation who care for over 82000 orphaned children in Iraq.
The two boys started this with a small group of their friends aged 2-6 last year and this year they have raised over £8000! It costs £55 per month to sponsor an orphan in Iran, so this will go a long way. The boys hope to make this a yearly endeavour.
Well done, Ali and Hassan, it is always wonderful to see pupils involved in charity work - your efforts will make a big difference.